THE Port of Mackay is scheduled to host the mammoth Höegh Trapper on Saturday (2 March).

The vessel is to be carrying new and used mining vehicles and machinery destined for the Bowen Basin.

Höegh Trapper is nearly 200 meters long and has the capacity to carry up to 8500 cars and will be the third Höegh ro-ro vessel to call at the Port of Mackay in the past six months, with a fourth ro-ro vessel slated to berth at the port in April.

North Queensland Bulk Ports (NQBP) chief executive officer Nicolas Fertin said the organisation was committed to investing in and upgrading its port facilities to attract new trade opportunities.

“In the past 18 months, we have invested almost $10m in infrastructure upgrades at the Port of Mackay,” he said.

“This has enabled us to attract large, international ro-ro vessels to the port, which then has a flow-on effect for the community. Large mining equipment can now be shipped directly to the region and assembled locally, providing the opportunity for local jobs growth.”

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This is the first time that the Port of Mackay will facilitate an exchange of import, export and coastal cargoes at the one time.

Höegh has increased its direct shipping service to Australia and New Zealand from the US and Mexico, providing Mackay and the nearby Bowen Basin with a direct link to North American mining equipment manufacturers.

Höegh’s Australia representative Brendan Wallis said: “Our New Horizon-class vessels are designed with this kind of over dimensional cargo in mind, and it is great to have an opportunity to serve our customers better by landing their cargo closer to its final destination”.

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